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Late November 2010 Letters to the editor


I just read "My View" in the October Corn & Soybean Digest.  Look up "sugar the bitter truth" on Youtube and listen to the argument against high-fructose corn syrup.  It's lengthy (maybe an hour), but could change your mind or maybe even your long-term health. It starts with the history of HFCS, then the politics and finally the health science. Thanks for the magazine, I always read it nearly cover to cover.     

Ken Little

Wapakoneta, Ohio


Being both a farm owner and a chemist, I studied your editorial in the October 2010 issue of Corn and Soybean Digest with interest.  You seem to believe or want to believe that cane or beet sugar is the same as HFCS.

The difference between sucrose (cane or beet sugar) and HCFS is as fundamental as the difference between a pure chemical compound and a mixture.

Sucrose is one of the most chemically pure compounds known to man.  Common kitchen sugar purchased at the market can be as much as 99.99% pure sucrose. Often it is 99.999% sucrose. Sucrose is a double sugar (disaccharide) that can be broken into the two single sugars (monosaccharides) fructose and glucose. This latter mixture is called "invert sugar".

On the other hand, HFCS is a mixture mainly of fructose and glucose.  Both the invert sugar, derived from sucrose, and HFCS contain about equal amounts of the two single sugars fructose and glucose.  HFCS also has the potential of carrying traces of impurities due to the two-step chemical process used to transform cornstarch into HFCS.

Sugar is NOT sugar!

Sugar is a generic term. Compare it to an automobile while sucrose, fructose, and glucose would be comparable to Ford, Mazda and Buick.

Ideally my preference would be sucrose due to its lack of any impurities, but being a farm owner (the farm's major crop is corn), I also see the advantage to furthuring the use of HFCS.


Dr. Jason H. Manchester

Columbus, OH



Tax update

Since the October Corn & Soybean Digest tax article, the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 has been signed into law, which increased the allowance for expense method depreciation for qualifying property placed in service during the taxable year in 2010 and 2011 from $250,000to a maximum allowance of $500,000 and a threshold phase-out of $2,000,000. The new law also qualifies some real property items for expense method depreciation.

The 50% bonus depreciation was reinstated for 2010 only (property must be placed in service during 2010), except for long-lived and transportation property which is available in 2010 and 2011.

--Provided courtesy of Neil Harl,

Charles F. Curtiss distinguished professor of economics emeritus

Iowa State University

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